BGC describes “utter dismay” at England casino reopening delay

By Owain Flanders

The Betting and Gaming and Council (BGC) has described its “utter dismay” after the UK Government decided to delay the reopening of casinos in England until at least 15 August.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson gave the news at a Downing Street press conference earlier today, in which he stated that it was time to “squeeze the brake pedal” on reopening plans.

BGC CEO Michael Dugher has written an open letter to UK Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak in response to the decision.

Dugher labelled the Government U-turn as “highly illogical, inconsistent and deeply damaging to those businesses and thousands of staff they employ.”

Reiterating the argument of his recent tweet, Dugher questioned why casinos should remain closed in areas without an increase in COVID-19 cases, such as Bristol.

The BGC also described the Prime Minister’s assertion that casinos are  at “higher risk” than other businesss as “bizarre and quite wrong.”

The industry group has been working with the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport and Public Health England to ensure casino properties would meet health and safety requirements when they reopened from 1 August.

Gambling Insder recently spoke with Hippodrome CEO and Chairman Simon Thomas to discuss the property’s plans for reopening this week – something which will now need to be delayed for at least two more weeks.


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